July 28, 2008
Dearborn Chief of Police remembered for career
of commitment to serving his hometown
DEARBORN, Mich. – Dearborn Chief of Police Michael Celeski died of an
apparent heart attack this morning (Monday, July 28). He was 49 years old and
had spent his entire career with the Dearborn Police Department.
A lifelong Dearborn resident, Celeski was appointed Chief of Police in
2005 by the late Mayor Michael A. Guido.
As Dearborn’s top law enforcement officer, he promoted initiatives to
enhance services to citizens, such as: public education anti-crime and personal
safety presentations; the City’s new Neighborhood Watch program; police “park
and walk” neighborhood walking patrols and a “cop on the porch” residential area
anti-speeding program, among other outreach activities.
He was a frequent speaker at neighborhood association meetings and
was very accessible to residents.
Mayor John B. O’Reilly praised Chief Celeski for his service to the
“Chief Celeski was dedicated to Dearborn. He devoted his entire career to
our community, which was his hometown. He was very committed to serving the
people of Dearborn as police chief and he made that sense of service a
continuing priority for the police department,” said Mayor O’Reilly.
“He also served our residents through volunteering for worthy causes and
by participating in all sorts of community activities,” said Mayor O’Reilly.
“And he showed his depth of compassion by providing tremendous
support to Mayor Guido and his family through the very difficult time of the
mayor’s illness. Our hearts now go out to Chief Celeski’s family, friends and
fellow officers,” said Mayor O’Reilly.
Celeski began his long and decorated career with the police department
by becoming a police cadet in 1979, shortly after graduating from Edsel Ford
High School. He rose steadily through the ranks, earning numerous
commendations and promotions.
Celeski became a patrol officer in 1982, after earning a degree in criminal
justice from Henry Ford Community College. He was promoted to the rank of
corporal in 1986 and then to the rank of patrol sergeant in 1991.
In 1994, he became the officer in charge of the police narcotics bureau,
where the team he led executed 50 search warrants, broke up drug distribution
operations and shut down several illegal businesses.
Promoted to lieutenant in 1999, Celeski took over as patrol division
commander in 2001 and then was promoted to deputy chief in 2003.
He earned special honors for a variety of initiatives he led during his
career. For example, while serving in the police unit that targets auto theft,
Celeski instituted the “kill switch” discount program for Dearborn residents and an
auto theft sting program.
He received 29 merit award letters from the Michigan Anti-Car Theft
Committee for his efforts in battling vehicle theft.
Throughout his career, Celeski participated in intense training to gain
proficiency in a variety of technical skills, as well as command expertise. In 1992,
he attended the prestigious School of Police Staff and Command.
Celeski was a member of the Wayne County Association of Chiefs of
Police and of the Southeastern Michigan Association of Chiefs of Police.
In 1986, the Exchange Club of Dearborn named him as its police officer of
Michael Celeski is survived by his wife, Corinne, and their children: a son,
Cory, and two daughters, Keegan and Calli.